Game of the Year: Outcast
Up: Omikron: The Nomad Soul
believe that this category was determined by a single vote? Amazing.
Both Omikron: The Nomad Soul and Outcast are remarkable
games, managing to create an entire world for the game to take place
in, complete with working cities, hundreds of people to talk to,
hundreds of different locations, and it's all strung together with
a genuinely intriguing plot.
no question in my mind that Outcast is a superior game, but
it's only marginally so. Outcast is so epic in its scale,
so advanced in the way it handles everything from its camera, to
the interface and dialogue, that there are few adventure games ever
made that can come close to it. If Omikron had been released
any other year, it most certainly would have won this category...but
unfortunately as good a game as it is, it simply isn't as perfect
to say that it doesn't have its merits, mind you. Omikron
is an excellent title. I have never played a game before that successfully
managed to merge a 3D fighting game with a first person shooter
and an adventure title seamlessly. Actually, come to think of it,
I don't think anyone's ever tried it before. And then, of course,
there's the startling soundtrack by David Bowie, which simply must
be heard to be believed (although Outcast's original score
is breathtaking as well).
line is this: both games are fantastic. If you like adventure
games and haven't tried either...well, shame on you.
Game of the Year: Homeworld.
Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings.
a clash of the old with the new...Homeworld represents the
future of strategy, as far as I'm concerned. The game has a wonderful
story, a fully 3D camera in a way that not even Myth: The Fallen
Lords can claim to have attempted, and so much action that it
makes Total Annihilation look meek.
Kings, on the
other hand, is the worthy successor to a classic 2D strategy game
that may have claimed as many lives (and jobs) as EverQuest.
I asked my sister, Stephanie "Bobbi" Bergman, our associate
editor for some thoughts on Age of Kings:
like strategy games overall. I like fast moving, quick action shooters,
or busy role-playing games that keep me occupied. Age of Empires,
and its sequel, Age of Kings, manage to combine the speed
and action of the games I love, with the strategic elements of most
strategy games. That with an easy interface, the best tutorial I've
seen in a game in years, all create a wonderful game that just about
anyone can pick up and play. Jump online after finishing the tutorial,
and have a crazed match with someone in no time. If you want to
practice, you can learn advanced tactics, but AoK is one
of the first strategy games that is great for both the strategy
gamer novice, and the advanced player.
it's a question of personal taste. While Age of Kings isn't
quite as strong in the storytelling department (actually, it's not
even close) it does follow in the time-honored tradition of fully
open-ended games, a sub-genre perfected by Sid Meier. Both games,
however, manage to give a nice jolt in the arm to the often boring
strategy genre. Check 'em out.